(I am sitting on a railway platform)
I didn't sleep so well last night. I dreamed that I was being flung into the air by the ankle by Tom Hiddleston. This much I know. I woke up suddenly, leapt to my knees in a panic fighting not to throw up there and then. I'm less sure this bit actually happened. At the time I was convinced it was real. In movies etc people always wake up suddenly and startlingly, sit bolt upright, gasp, wake themselves screaming etc. I don't do this, even from bad nightmares. I suspect most people don't. And this wasn't a nightmare. It wasn't scary. Tom Hiddleston is supremely unscary. Even if it had been Loki - well, my poor-little-Loki switch is still jammed in the 'on' position so I doubt I'd have been scared even if he'd shown up. So I conclude it's unlikely I did have such a physical reaction to the dream and it was one of these rare but real dreams-within-a-dream where I've dreamed I've woken up - this has certainly happened to me before and last time the fake wake-up also featured a film-style wake-up from a bad dream.
I am off to London. 1) to go to the Covent Garden map shop 2) to visit the Greenwich IMAX.
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I'm at Altitude. It's now Thursday. I've been to eight shows, got two more today and at least two tomorrow. Late Shows run until 2 or 2.30 am, snowboarding lessons need me to be up by 8am and the gap in between is mostly filled with insomnia. Please don't think I'm not enjoying it but I'm crazy tired and I'm at that stage of exhaustion where I'm a ticking time bomb of anger and tears and at the moment, it's on the brink of exploding out in one particular direction, at a target who probably doesn't really deserve my rage. Just two minutes, you bastard! What is wrong with you?!
Anyway, phoned home, told Mum I'd been out so late every night and up so early every morning and I'm so tired I plan to spend most of tomorrow asleep. I got "You can't, you're on holiday, you can't waste your time like that." Do you see where I get this need to put pressure on myself from? If it's about putting in enough 'holiday hours' I've done that. I'm doing twenty-hour days! It's apparently unreasonable to want more than sixteen hours sleep in an entire week - from the woman who throws a tantrum if she doesn't get eight hours a *night*, minimum.
A post filled with the joy of Altitude will be forthcoming when I'm less exhausted and moody. Probably Sunday. (And it is joyful here, although obviously I'm not really selling it right now)
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And you know how I said the kids were making a racket at 11.20pm? At midnight they shut up. Gladly, I went to sleep.
Only to be startled awake, completely disoriented, didn't know which way was which and convinced there was another floor above my room (which there isn't; I'm in the roof) by drunk students thumping up the stairs, yelling, slamming doors, yelling more for good measure, playing obscenely loud music, slamming more doors, thumping walls, still yelling...
Have I painted a vivid enough picture of the noise these creatures are making? My clock said 2.07am. It is now 3.15am and while they're quieter, I can still hear voices.
I am not brave enough to go out bleary eyed barefooted and in pyjamas to ask drunk Scottish (and possibly Northern Irish) to shut the fuck up but i will certainly make sure my alarm is nice and loud and goes off several times in the morning. I may even leave a furious message on reception - which won't be open when I leave. I may even go so far as to leave rude notes on their doors. I have never really used or felt the need to use the taboo c-word but believe me, it suits them and their noise very well. (On which note, I've never comprehended why it's considered so much worse than the other words)
I know this is a hostel rather than a hotel but it does have rules including shutting the fuck up when people are sleeping.
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Slept when I got home from work. Stupid. Now 2am and I can't fucking sleep. Bitch bitch bitch. Go the fuck to sleep, body. You're tired and I've put you to bed with an open window so you can breathe and a hot water bottle for warmth because it's cold with the window open. Now go to sleep before I lose my temper.
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I know it's just a piece of metal, and not even valuable metal. But it is so so precious and I'm so heartbroken. I know there's nothing you can do to help find it but if anyone is inclined to pray to St Anthony of Padua, the patron saint of lost things, I'm sure it wouldn't hurt.
Tonight I have fed the Pig and eaten too many Doritos and had a very long bath and finished the rubbish chick-lit with the outrageously bright pink cover I started a month ago and I have a very warm laptop on my knees. I have one more tablet to take and then I'm done - two full weeks of trying to swallow a weeny little pill three times a day. I'm going to hurt a lot in approximately four days time and be very unhappy but at least that didn't happen while I was on holiday and the sums I've done work out that I won't hurt while I'm in Orkney either. But I'll be so glad not to have to force the pills down after tonight.
I sat in a meeting with the bank manager - very nice, rather good looking and provided adequate entertainment to not get too bored while we discussed cash flow spreadsheets. Well, cash flow would have been ok. I was there because I'm the one who actually put the cash flow spreadsheet together. But the nice bank manager wanted to discuss the spreadsheet that I didn't make, the one that provided the figures for me to put in my sheet. So I spent an hour and a half not having a clue what he and the accountant were talking about, occasionally daydreaming and being suddenly recalled when he asked for my opinion. I am not an accountant. I am an office dogsbody who happens to have a vague idea how Excel works. But like I say, it wasn't unpleasant to be in his company for a while.
I am still relishing this independence thing. In a little while I will drag myself off to bed, wrap up in my beloved blankets and probably fail to fall asleep.
(Just for the fun of it, I keep writing little snippets of Alex/Joey. Not going to end up in the book. Just because they're pretty. Alex is very disinterested in romantic/sexual relationships and Joey's straight and not looking for anyone new after his last relationship disaster anyway. God knows how they would end up "together". But it's still fun writing them cuddling up together, squabbling over the amount of breakfast one should eat, having a chaotic pile of books, biscuits, glasses, needles and smartphones beside the bed and putting cold hands up each others backs at night for warmth. Fluffy spies are fluffy.)
ALSO!! ALSO!!! Is it just an English thing or does it sound unbearably posh to everyone to shorten the word "umbrella" to "brelly"? Only "brelly" makes a lot more sense than "brolly". Only it does sound unbearably posh to say "brelly". I generally compromise and go for "umbrelly". Because at home, I talk like a four-year-old. (seriously. My "kitchen table dialect" is a hideous mixture of lolcat, babytalk, carrot cruncher and intentional appalling grammar with a smattering of Navy Lark and just a touch of Mitchell & Webb. In my defence, in public I do speak like an adult human being, albeit one who talks too fast and then falls over her words and finishes up stuttering.)
Today I have read A Study in Scarlet. About time too. Again I was astonished at its readability, considering its age. And yes, the Mormon section could, at least, have been shrunk down quite a bit. And I don't think I'll be recommending it to Jess, who is a Mormon. But the thing that really astonished me was how much of the framework remained in the BBC version from last summer. I think it could have been fun to see Gregson v Lestrade v Holmes but I can see why Sherlock had to be Sherlock v the police. Holmes himself isn't quite, at this point, the same Holmes he is in the short stories which is what I've read so far. This Holmes is quite bitter about letting the police take the credit for his work whereas later on he really doesn't care. I believe I'm quite looking forward to reading The Sign of the Four in the next week.
( Stress at work, hand injury, shopping/hiking, sleep. Kinda rambly )
This time I watched it - Mission Impossible 2/3, that is - while half working on Chapter Twelve of the sequel of my own spy series and comparing Ethan Hunt to Alex Leyland. They're not very similar in much apart from that they're not very tall. Alex is absolutely phobic about heights which rules him out of trying about 60% of Ethan's stunts, for one thing. I need to make my spy books a little more exotic. Not too much. That's half the point, that the reality is nothing like James Bond, or indeed Ethan Hunt. Chapter Twelve is a bitch. It's over 1000 words too short, I've got Joey having a bout of despair-induced depression, Alex down in the dumps and a thunderstorm rattling around keeping everyone awake. I've been poking it for about two months now in the hope that it'll finish itself and I can move onto a cheerier chapter.
(I am feeling much better than I was earlier. Tomorrow I am off shopping for a couple of OS maps, a compass of my own and some proper waterproof waterproofs. Mine are waterproof in the way a tent is - touch the inside and the water comes through. And you can't wear waterproofs without touching the insides.)
Dianne Morgan is so pretty - I want her hair!
Micky Flanagan... oh, Micky is always good. I can't describe quite the feelings his comedy produces in me.
Andy Parsons still sounded a bit croaky this week - we've had croaky people on MtW before but it doesn't usually last two weeks. Ed had a bit of a croaky moment as well. Dear internet: Andy Parsons is brilliant, stop being mean to him.
Chris - I do feel he slightly overeggs his stand-up bit - not that it wasn't hilarious but I think he could tone it back just a wee bit without annoying me too much. But he's great and he's lively and he's clever and funny and so utterly natural and I love him.
Oh, Ed.... what were you wearing, sweetie?! Part of me is horrified and part of me finds the combination completely endearing. And stop cutting your hair! It seems to be getting very regular trims recently and he needs to let it grow out just a wee bit - we want our really shaggy-haired Ed back! I've never seen Ed in a mood like that - it was beautiful. *hugs the Ed* And sweetie, as the father of a Cosmo, you're not really in any position to criticise anyone else's choice of unusual baby names. (Yes, I am having a one-sided conversation with an imaginary Ed and calling him sweetie) I have decided something else - that my boy is right-footed. And also that he was high as a kite on that episode. And maybe shouldn't have started on Piers Morgan - while I agree with the sentiment, saying something like that in public is as foolish as deliberately taking on the Chegwin thugs. I think Morgan's "I hear you've been saying on #mocktheweek you want to punch me @MrEdByrne - yet when you met me you kissed my a** like a lovesick puppy." is a little inaccurate though - if you haven't heard the infamous Ed v Piers on YouTube, they did have a bit of a tussle. Hardly the stuff of lovesick puppies.
It got to about 10am before I remembered I didn't have breakfast. This isn't unusual, I generally don't bother having breakfast if I've got to go to work and it's a really bad habit and I really should force myself out of bed ten or twenty minutes earlier to make time for it. But at 10, I suddenly realised I was really really hungry. For some reason, if I don't eat before bed, I'm not hungry the next day. If I do eat before bed, I'm invariably starving in the morning. And I was starving! And then Mandy came over at lunchtime to do some Brownie planning so I didn't get any lunch either *cries*
It's odd how lack of food affects your mood. Despite the fact that I come to LJ to whine and cry and be sad and angry and unleash a gamut of negative emotions I don't get to display in real life, the flesh-and-blood me is generally sunny-tempered, or at the very least placid and even-tempered. But this afternoon... I could feel this hunger-induced despair. Things that shouldn't have been upsetting me were - I won't even start on the saga of the chocolate biscuits. I was resentful of everyone else in the room who had eaten in the last twelve hours, I was starting to have trouble getting a thought together (although this may be the stress of covering the work of two people who are away - I'm half trained in their work, but I'm office admin and crap jobs, not order processing and I suspect it would be just as quick for the order people to do the orders themselves than to have to keep answering my questions)
Anyway. Then I went snowboarding. I had to buy a new pass because I finished my one last time. Accidentally bought ten hours instead of five but never mind. I've got through four passes in the last two years so I will be using those five hours eventually but that's twenty half-hour sessions. If I go twice a month, that's ten months it'll last! There were some Explorers coming to play on the ringos, using half the slope and possibly straying onto the other half. They apologised that I probably wouldn't get much snowboarding done. "Obviously, we won't take any time off your pass for tonight...." Sweet. I like the snowboarding lot. They do give me a free night from time to time. When it's half term and there are ten thousand kids learning to ski so the queue for the lift is eight miles long and you only manage three descents in the half hour - I got that night for free as well.
The "Explorers" looked familiar, or their t-shirts did. After I'd finished and put my normal shoes back on, I approached their leader and asked if they were Rangers. They were indeed and we spent half an hour chatting about Senior Section. She's given me some interesting ideas to discuss with my own girls and also given me a flyer about an activity challenge camp for the entire county that has somehow not made it to my neck of the woods. It looks great. I really hope my girls would like to go. All sorts of activities for £20, finishing up the night with a barbecue. And then I got home at 7.30pm and finally got to have some food. Been awake eleven and a half hours, done a day's work and been snowboarding and only just getting the first morsels of food in me. Well done there. I would make a good anorexic because I can go quite a long time without food. I would make a bad anorexic because I hate it and it would make me cry all the time.
And finally, I've decided to go ahead and have a go at the Walking Qualification. I picked up the book last time I was at CHQ, flicked through, shuddered and put it down. But I'll be brave. I'm a qualified leader, now I will do an activity qualification. I will get in touch with the County Outdoors Advisor to see how I go about doing the qualification - will it at any point involve a weekend at one of the training centres? I will order the book tonight, it'll arrive next week and I can have a look through and see how plausible it really looks.
*puts down the sewing*
If you ever take it into your head to sew a stripe down the sleeves of a hoodie, don't. I've been doing it since not long after Doctor Who finished and I'm only about two-thirds of the way up the first sleeve. I keep having to unpick it because the odd stitch catches through the sleeve or it goes wonky or it just isn't quite working. It's infuriating. Even if we had a sewing machine (we did once, lent to a friend of my mother's about ten years ago and not seen since), I'm no good with the things and I find it much easier to sew by hand. I'm too tired by now and I've been staring at teeny-weeny stitches for about three hours and I'll pick it up again tomorrow and try to have it finished by next weekend.
Up to episode ten of Boardwalk Empire. Oh, and I watched Doctor Who and I feel I should react to it but I'm too cross-eyed right now.